At its 2012 Annual Meeting on Tuesday, May 1, the Abe Keller Peace Education Fund (AKPEF) hosted a panel, “Peace Education for the Next Generation, Want Peace? Let’s Teach Peace!” and recognized two Seattle educators for excellence and innovation in peace education. Recipients of the Abe Keller Peace Education Fund 2012 Peace Education Award are Jesse Hagopian, a Garfield high school history instructor, and Beth Brunton, an instructor at Middle College High School, an alternative Seattle high school.
In addition to the award recipients, the panelists also included Jerry Large, noted “Seattle Times” columnist, and astute observer on human interest topics, and Karen Gourd, Professor of Education at the University of Washington Bothell, where she focuses on equity, education and social change, and multicultural education. The panelists presented insights and perspectives on the need for peace education in our communities, and discussed steps and models for incorporating peace education into our classrooms.
Hagopian was recognized for his exceptional work at Garfield High School. His innovative teaching methods include using Paulo Freire’s problem-posing pedagogy to teach students to think critically about American wars and role plays to motivate their research into historical events, and writing ten-point programs to try to mobilize other students to join their program or to work in coalition, resulting in students empowered to organize for peace and justice. He is also the founder of Social Equality Educators, and organization of activist educators in Seattle seeking to transform education in terms that empower students, teachers, and the communities served by public schools.
Beth Brunton received the Peace Education Award for her work with students at Middle College High School in Seattle. She excels in teaching positive ways of resolving conflict, using nonviolent communication, role-plays about mediation and negotiation, Socratic seminars, and the using the “Force More Powerful” videos that chronicle successful nonviolent campaigns in her history and literature classes, helping students develop skills to deal with conflict in their everyday lives.
The Abe Keller Peace Education Fund was founded in 1998 to address peace-education needs in the Puget Sound community through fund-raising and grant making for worthy peace-education activities.
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